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Galleria at Pittsburgh Mills to welcome 2 restaurants

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By Ron Daparma
Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2007

It didn't take long for the new owner of the Galleria at Pittsburgh Mills to fill one of the prime vacant spaces at the 1.1 million-square-foot shopping complex in Frazer.

Less than a month after taking control of the $300 million shopping complex from financially troubled Mills Corp., Zamias Services Inc., of Johnstown, announced Monday a new tenant for the 25,000-square-foot site vacated in August by the Lucky Strike Lanes bowling alley and restaurant/lounge.

Abate Seafood and Dingbats Restaurant, two restaurants that had been in operation more than 20 years at the Waterworks Mall in Pittsburgh, will open facilities at Pittsburgh Mills by May.

The restaurants, which closed at the Waterworks last summer, are under new ownership with plans to bring more than 300 jobs when they open at Pittsburgh Mills, said Stephen Zamias, CEO of the family-owned Zamias Services.

"We're thrilled to have them," Zamias said.

Furthermore, Zamias Services is edging closer to a deal that would bring a new department store to Pittsburgh Mills that would occupy more than 100,000 square feet of space, he said.

Zamias declined to identify the department store but previously said the store is eyeing the site where the Mills Corp. had planned a NASCAR SpeedPark that never opened.

"It's looking pretty good," Zamias said yesterday. A deal is possible by the end of February, he said.

Local real estate experts have speculated the tenant could be Boscov's, which last year opened two stores in the Pittsburgh area, or possibly Kohl's.

Boscov CEO Ken Lakin declined to comment earlier this month, saying only that the company continues to explore opportunities in the region.

Construction of the new Abate Seafood and Dingbats will begin immediately, according to Zamias.

Abate will focus on seafood entrees but also will feature a variety of poultry, beef and house specialty dishes in a fine-dining environment.

Dingbats will offer American cuisine, said Ron Sullivan, the restaurants' owner, in a statement.

"We want to give high-quality, made-from-scratch food at affordable prices in comfortable and clean surroundings," he said. "Our motto is 'A Fun Place to Eat and Drink.'"

The restaurants' facility will include Royal Gatherings, a dividable, 200-plus-seat meeting and banquet facility, available for events from small business meetings to large banquets, Sullivan said.

"These two new restaurants will compliment our already extensive restaurant and specialty food category at Pittsburgh Mills," said Zamias President Damian Zamias.

Existing restaurants include Chef Steff's Ristorante, Johnny Rockets and Houlihan's, while Starbucks, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Taco Bell, and Cafe Roma outlets are currently under construction in the food court.

Peripheral restaurants include Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse and Chili's.

Zamias is building 200,000 square feet of retail space at the Village at Pittsburgh Mills, located on land around the Galleria, where an Applebee's Neighborhood Grill and Bar is being added.

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